Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Weekend Recap

While I'm glad that we are done with our travel for the calendar year, that doesn't mean we've slowed down that much. Thursday and Friday, we hit the Opportunity Village Magical Forest and the Ethel M Cactus Garden with the Bowens. Keds has photos of the kids (including Jennifer who turns into a six-year old at places like this) that I'm sure she'll post on her blog later. Friday also brought the shock of the A's trading their ace Dan Haren to Arizona. I've learned over time to trust Billy Beane, but this one stings a little.

Saturday was an interesting day. It started off with some volunteer work with the John Edwards campaign. Initially they paired me up with a partner, and we were given a nice neighborhood in Green Valley to cavass - we each had one side of the street. From the start the dude wasn't thrilled since he lives in the "Northwest." Then he ran into his neighbor, who had a custom list printed for himself. Now mind you, it wasn't his own neighborhood, but it was closer. So he started angling to get out of it. My favorite line was "I signed up to be a precinct leader and I think I should get to know the people in my area." Ultimately I told him that I lived in Aliante and I was willing to head out to Green Valley. Right before they went over the logistics, he informed me that he was going with his neighbor. Fine - just hand your packet back in and see if they can't get anyone else. After our quick and dirty training, I told the trainer my partner flaked. He offered to go canvassing with me, but when we checked in with the desk, he did tell them he was going with his neighbor, but didn't hand his half of the packet in. So we got a new neighborhood - in the neighborhood of Owens and Pecos.

Needless to say, the neighborhood wasn't nearly as nice. And Ryan and I were totally out of place in the neighborhood. Of the folks that were home, about 75% with Latino and the adults didn't speak English. In addition, a representative from the Culinary Union was also canvassing the neighborhood. Probably the most interesting that happened was that I was chased off someone's front porch because a little girl answered the door when she shouldn't have. She then woke her mother that was sleeping. I exercised some bad judgment here, but if that's the worst thing that happened all day it really wasn't that bad.

After dropping Ryan back off at campaign HQ, I had some lunch and then met Keds who had picked my Mom's best friend Maureen up at the airport and they were at the Galleria, not too far from where I was. We had some more lunch, and then I headed home. Keds had a "Girls Night Out" Saturday night, and I just relaxed at home and then headed over to Mom and Dad's to visit with them and Maureen.

Sunday was a breakfast and football double feature. Dad and I watched the Bills play in the Blizzard Bowl in Cleveland while Keds made an awesome breakfast of French Toast and Brown Sugar Bacon. After watching the Bills game, and seeing the Dolphins get their first win of the year, Maureen and Keds arrived home from Home Depot and Maureen got to work hanging the Roman Shade she made for our kitchen window. It looks AWESOME. We then went to Binion's Ranch Steakhouse at Binion's downtown. So good. Our filet was so tender, you could cut it with a fork.

Monday, Paris turned 3. We had her birthday part last night.

And now we are in the full run-up for Christmas. Hal isn't coming in now, since he's hospitalized with pneumonia. We are seeing our friends Vegas Princess and Charming Wednesday and both Keds and I are looking forward to The Biggest Loser Finale tonight.

Have a great week!

Monday, December 10, 2007

A trip worth taking

First, I would like to announce that we are done traveling for the year! OK, so there are only three weekends left this year, it's still three weekends that we don't have to travel!

This past weekend, we traveled to Philadelphia to attend my little cousin's Bar Mitzvah. A quick family history lesson for those of you that may be confused. My oldest cousin on my Dad's side converted to Judaism so she could marry her now husband. It was her son's Bar Mitzvah that we were attending.

Along with this being the first time I was seeing most of my cousins in nearly 9 years, and not having seen my uncle in 5, it was also Keds' first time meeting my entire Dad's side of the family since none of them made it to the wedding. This was also Keds' first time dealing with the weather in the Northeast at this time of year. Add to this, a total of 11 hours of flying time with Mom and Dad set the weekend up with quite a bit of stress.

In the end, the weekend was a lot of fun. The weather mostly held up (but it was still pretty cold) and I was glad to see my cousins and they all took to Keds like I thought they would. TC did a fantastic job at services. The cantor had earlier told him his Hebrew was flawless and from what I could tell, he did extremely well. My cousins got a little choked up, as there was a lot of talk about their Mom this weekend. It's hard to believe she's been gone for nearly three years now.

So now we are back home and glad that we can focus on getting ready for Christmas.

No more travel in 2007!